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Shane Warne, Australia Cricket Legend, Dies Of 'Suspected Heart Attack’; He Was 52

Shane Warne was an icon of the game. He is only behind fellow spin great Muttiah Muralitharan in the all-time list of wicket-takers.

Shane Warne, Australia Cricket Legend, Dies Of 'Suspected Heart Attack’; He Was 52
Shane Warne took 708 and 293 wickets in Tests and ODIs respectively. Photo: BCCI

Shane Warne, regarded as one of the greatest bowlers of all time, has died, aged 52. (More Cricket News)

Warne's management released a statement on Friday saying that the Australian spin great has passed away in Koh Samui, Thailand, of a suspected heart attack.

"Shane was found unresponsive in his villa and despite the best efforts of medical staff, he could not be revived,” Fox Sports reported quoting the statement.

“The family requests privacy at this time and will provide further details in due course."

A revered figure in India, Warne is known for his legendary rivalry with batting great Sachin Tendulkar. The legends however translated their on-field rivalry into an enduring friendship, and they would often share endearing social posts, talking about cricket.

A "shocked, stunned" Tendulkar, now left "miserable" wrote a heartfelt message in a Twitter post: "Will miss you Warnie. There was never a dull moment with you around, on or off the field. Will always treasure our on field duels & off field banter. You always had a special place for India & Indians had a special place for you."

Harrowing 24 Hours

This is 24 harrowing hours for Australian cricket. Another Aussie great, legendary wicketkeeper Rod Marsh died early on Friday having suffered a heart attack last week.

Warne has condoled the demise of Marsh in a tweet in the morning. "Sad to hear the news that Rod Marsh has passed. He was a legend of our great game & an inspiration to so many young boys &  girls. Rod cared deeply about cricket & gave so much-especially to Australia & England players. Sending lots & lots of love to Ros & the family. RIP mate."

In a celebrated career, Warne took 708 and 293 wickets in Tests and ODIs respectively for Australia.

Warne played 145 Tests and 194 ODIs for Australia between 1992 and 2007. A World Cup winner in 1999, he was named as one of Wisden's Five Cricketers of the Century.

'Ball Of The Century' And More

A beloved cricketer, Warne is credited to have bowled the most magical of deliveries in cricket - 'the ball of the century' - a delivery which dismissed Mike Gatting in the Manchester Test during Australia's Ashes tour of England in 1993.

And Ashes, cricket's original fixture, remains his favourite jaunt, claiming 195 wickets with best figures of 8/71. He has 11 five-wicket hauls and four 10-fers against England. Overall, he has 37 five-fors and 10 ten-fours.

In an international career spanning 15 years, Warne had established himself as an icon of the game. He is only behind Sri Lankan legend Muttiah Muralitharan in the all-time list of wickets taken.

After retirement from international cricket in January 2007, he continued to play First-Class cricket. And he played for Rajasthan Royals for four seasons, from 2008 to 2011, triumphantly leading the side to its first and only title in the inaugural edition.

Shane Warne, left, with his former Australian captain Ricky Ponting on the sidelines of an IPL match
Shane Warne, left, with his former Australian captain Ricky Ponting on the sidelines of an IPL match. Photo: BCCI

Warne made his international debut in January 1992 in a Test against India in Sydney and played his first ODI match against New Zealand at Wellington in 1993.

The Test debut, however, was a chastening experience for the spin great. He had leaked 150 runs for one wicket. But Warne took very little time to establish himself as a world-beater, with his veritable spin, bamboozling batters of every class. Then came that magical delivery in 1993.

A celebrity in his own right, Warne was banned in 2003 for testing positive for a prohibited substance. But he returned in 2004.

Always a keen reader of the game, Warne was also a well-known commentator, doing stints all over the world.

Shane Warne was separated from his wife Simone, the mother of his three children. He later got engaged to English actress Liz Hurley in 2010. They eventually split in 2013.

He was inducted into the ICC Hall of Fame in 2013.

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